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The National Organization for Women needs to change its name

Stephanie Lundquist-Arora is a contributor for the Washington Examiner, a mother in Fairfax County, Virginia, an author, a member of the Coalition for TJ, and the Fairfax chapter leader of the Independent Women’s Network. This piece originally appeared on Washington Examiner.

Last week, the National Organization for Women objected to women’s sports being reserved for females only. NOW needs to change its name — maybe from NOW to the National Organization for Misogyny, because it definitely does not represent women any longer.

Not only is the organization advocating males in women’s sports, it is trying to silence critics with absurd name-calling. They claim that opposing the participation of males in women’s sports is “white supremacist patriarchy at work.”

Someone needs to get that internet keyboard warrior away from the computer.

It is unclear how race entered the equation. In fact, in a Pew Research Center survey, black respondents were more likely than white respondents to agree with the statement that gender is determined by sex at birth. And it seems that whoever is handling the social media account for NOW, excuse me, NOM, doesn’t understand what “patriarchy” means.

I am disappointed in NOW, an organization that I once supported. When notions of feminism meant equal rights for the two sexes, I referred to myself as a feminist. You might have noticed those inclinations by my hyphenated last name.

Betty Friedan’s book, The Feminine Mystique, made an impact on my thinking as I came of age and still sits on my bookshelf. I wonder what Friedan, one of the founders of NOW, would think about her organization’s support of this blatant discrimination against females if she were alive today. Friedan and others in her organization were at the front lines of advocating Title IX only to have it gutted by the misogynists who took over.

On the other hand, Title IX has an ally in Caitlyn Jenner, who well understands what the differences between the biological sexes mean for athletic competition. Jenner, who is transgender, has been a vocal proponent of keeping women’s sports female.

It is remarkable that anyone, particularly members of NOW, would support the idea that males should compete in women’s sports. Maybe it is just out of sheer ignorance. Often, the most vocal proponents of this insanity look like they have never competed in any sports, ever. From experience, I recommend that proponents of males in women’s sports start learning jiu-jitsu. Spar with both a male and a female of your weight for a quick lesson in fairness.

It seems to me that males who are subpar athletes might feel that they have a better shot at winning when they are competing against females, who are comparatively biologically disadvantaged in size, speed, and strength. You only need to look at the male athletes, such as collegiate swimmer Lia Thomas, who once competed against men before transitioning to compete against women. Males, Thomas included, obviously fare much better in women’s sports than in men’s sports.

The athletic differences between the sexes are notable from an early age. Recently, I sat on the sidelines of a soccer scrimmage where 12-year-old boys competed against 14-year-old girls. The two teams were ranked at similar levels within their respective leagues. Already, the strength and speed difference gave the younger boys the advantage. And to the great disappointment of the girls, the boys’ team won.

Aside from the obvious fairness problems of males competing in women’s sports, the resulting injuries are undeniable. There are so many to point out and likely many more that have gone unreported. For example, a male’s spike in a North Carolina girl’s high school volleyball game resulted in Payton McNabb’s concussion, neck injury, impaired vision, and partial paralysis. In an MMA fight, a male fractured a female’s skull. Tamikka Brents had a concussion and required seven staples in her head as a result. Is this what equity and fairness look like to the Left?

Finally, there is the locker room issue. Real feminists do not support males in women’s private spaces. Former collegiate swimmer Riley Gaines has detailed her experience as an NCAA athlete being forced to change in a locker room with a large male, which made her feel extremely uncomfortable.

So, to the National Organization for Women, I conclude with this: if you are going to support obvious sexism, at least change your name.

The ironies of commemorating ‘Transgender Visibility Day’ on Easter

Stephanie Lundquist-Arora is a contributor for the Washington Examiner, a mother in Fairfax County, Virginia, an author, a member of the Coalition for TJ, and the Fairfax chapter leader of the Independent Women’s Network. This piece originally appeared on Washington Examiner.

After Fairfax County’s Board of Supervisors co-opted Easter this year with Transgender Visibility Day, other local and state governments, and even the Biden administration, did the same.

Our elected officials did not need to issue commemorative proclamations for a made-up, 15-year-old holiday that they knew would offend many Christians on their holiest day. They could have let the day take place for the leftist worshippers of the DEI religion without trying to cast shadows on Easter. But part of the DEI religion is forcing everyone else to worship at their altar, think their thoughts, and say their words. To that end, politicians issued commemorative proclamations for Transgender Visibility Day because it fell on Easter.

This type of disregard and mockery is reserved specifically for Christians in this country.

Jeff McKay, chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, tried to justify the usurpation of Easter by saying that he planned to attend church on Easter. In an email, he wrote, “As a Catholic, I will be celebrating Easter with my family on Sunday and will take the opportunity to also celebrate all people, especially the most vulnerable in our community.”

Because McKay calls himself a Catholic, he implies that his Christian constituents should be fine with the proclamation. People such as McKay can stand in a garage and call themselves a truck, but that does not make them a truck. In fact, Cardinal Wilton Gregory, the seventh archbishop of the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. suggested that President Joe Biden is a “cafeteria Catholic,” pointing out that Biden “picks and chooses dimensions of the faith to highlight while ignoring or even contradicting other parts.”

Although so-called Catholics such as Biden and McKay would like to legitimize their actions and hide behind their church attendance, their proclamation to commemorate Transgender Visibility Day on Easter is no less offensive to Christians because of it.

Make no mistake: Democratic politicians would have been much more cautious in issuing commemorative proclamations to celebrate a manufactured transgender holiday if it fell on an Islamic holy day. White liberals are terrified of being seen as culturally insensitive, which is why their cars are decorated with “Be Kind” magnets — because they hope you will believe they are kind and culturally sensitive. Whether or not they actually are seems to be irrelevant to them.

They also have a tenuous political alliance with American Muslims that fractures on LGBT matters. For that reason, if any transgender holiday fell on Eid, for example, the Biden administration would let it pass without comment.

Similarly, the Biden White House’s Easter message on social media was posted on both its Spanish and English accounts, but its message for Transgender Visibility Day four hours later was posted only in English. Clearly, the Biden administration was aware that co-opting Easter with a transgender holiday proclamation would do further damage to its relationship with Hispanic voters, many of whom are much more serious about their faith than Biden.

American Christians are appropriately shocked by the state-sanctioned takeover of Easter this year. Re-assigning Christian holidays, however, is part of the communist playbook. In this case, the DEI religion mandates that we worship at the altar of the state, not the church. This is not the first time that a government has tried to co-opt a Christian holy day, and it likely will not be the last.

In 1935, for example, the secular holiday “New Year’s Day” replaced Christmas in the Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin’s order. Rather than celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ, citizens were told to celebrate the arrival of Father Frost. The government promoted gift-giving as a way to show gratitude to the state and promote loyalty to the communist regime. In effect, they banned Christmas and repurposed it with a secular day that was compatible with communist ideals.

Any hint of a step in that direction, such as our politicians commemorating Transgender Visibility Day on Easter, is a step too far.

Fairfax County’s board of supervisors mocks Christians by designating Easter as Transgender Visibility Day

Stephanie Lundquist-Arora is a contributor for the Washington Examiner, a mother in Fairfax County, Virginia, an author, a member of the Coalition for TJ, and the Fairfax chapter leader of the Independent Women’s Network. This piece originally appeared on Washington Examiner.

Last week, Democrats on Fairfax County‘s board of supervisors voted to designate Easter Sunday as Transgender Visibility Day. The proclamation goes far beyond the supposed intent of making transgender people and gender ideology activists feel seen. Members of the board are also sending a message to Christians that they do not matter as they turn one of their holiest days into a celebration of an ideology that undermines the church’s core convictions.

Ironically, Chairman Jeff McKay, a Democrat, paid lip service to the importance of advocating all constituents when the board passed the resolution. He said, “As an elected official, it should be our moral responsibility to stand up for all people that we represent, not just the people we like or the people we agree with.”

If McKay and other members of the board were serious about their stated commitment to representing constituents, there are many other days they could have designated as Transgender Visibility Day.

Members of the board also used their illogical decision to hijack Easter as an opportunity to celebrate the governing body’s ideological homogeneity. The nine Democrats present at the meeting all voted in favor of the measure, but they lamented that there was one member of the board who was not present for the vote. Pat Herrity, a Republican, likely did not want to antagonize Christians who feel that their holy day is being desecrated. 

Herrity’s absence appears to have been unacceptable to James Walkinshaw, a Democrat. Walkinshaw advocated complete groupthink on the board of supervisors when he said, “I’m looking forward to the day when we have a full dais for this proclamation, and that day will come. One way or the other, that day will come.”

Aside from the inappropriateness of Transgender Visibility Day being on Easter this year, the resolution seems unnecessary in Fairfax County. The transgender activist community does not have a visibility problem in northern Virginia. But it does appear to have a narcissism problem. Fairfax County School Board, for example, has designated June as LGBT Pride Month and October as LGBT History Month. The community gets two full months of celebration in our district’s schools. Apparently, that just wasn’t enough.

Fairfax County Public Schools’ policies align with the board’s resolutions. For the last few years, Fairfax County’s students have been inundated with surveys at the beginning of the school year questioning them about their pronouns and gender identity. Many of the county’s classrooms are decorated with transgender flags. After mandating preferred pronouns, district officials are also pushing to include gender identity lessons in the family life education curriculum beginning in fourth grade. How much more “visible” does a group need to be?

One can’t help but feel that Fairfax County officials’ timing was deliberate. In fact, this is not the first time that Democratic-endorsed local officials have attacked Easter in Fairfax County. In past years, Fairfax County Public Schools’ spring break has traditionally coincided with the Easter holiday. But in 2021, the school board made many politically loaded changes to the district’s calendar that included the intentional “decoupling” of spring break from Easter. It was not only inappropriate but logistically problematic for many reasons, and it had to reverse the decision.

I agree with McKay that elected officials should do their best to advocate “all people [they] represent, not just the people [they] like or the people that [they] agree with.” Hopefully, McKay and others on the board of supervisors and the district’s school board will try harder moving forward to represent the Christians in their community.

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Cruel and Unusual Punishment: Documentary of Former Inmate Exposes Shocking Human Rights Violations Inside Women’s Prisons

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Independent Women’s Forum (IWF) released the second episode in its exclusive documentary series, Cruel & Unusual Punishment: The Male Takeover of Female Prisons. The series documents the ugly fallout of policies that allow male inmates—including convicted sex offenders—to declare themselves “women” and be housed with females. The second episode in the series features Amie Ichikawa, a former inmate who now serves as an ambassador at Independent Women’s Forum.

Ichikawa was incarcerated at Central California Women’s Facility (CCWF), where she served five years. After her release from prison, Ichikawa co-founded a nonprofit organization, Woman II Woman, where she keeps in contact with hundreds of female inmates to provide them support. In 2021, after California Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law SB 132—legislation that opened the door for male prisoners to transfer into women’s prisons—Ichikawa began receiving letters, emails, and phone calls from incarcerated women being harmed by this policy.

As a former inmate who was also incarcerated with convicted men who identified as women, Ichikawa feels obligated to be a voice for desperate women who are being silenced behind bars. She began sounding the alarms about what was happening as a result of Newsom’s policy, but was met with the cold-shoulder by organizations that traditionally serve as advocates for female inmates. 

“There was so much despair and hopelessness, and it was really intense. I reached out to other organizations, the larger organizations that would characteristically help women, and the pushback I got was very surprising,” Ichikawa says in the documentary. “No one wanted to talk about it. And the people who did want to talk about it told me I needed to get educated and learn the language. Someone actually told me that I needed to be careful, and I didn’t care then because it didn’t feel political, it felt like a human rights issue, and I still don’t care because it is a human rights issue.”

IWF’s Storytelling Director and co-producer of the series, Kelsey Bolar, said, “Amie Ichikawa began fighting for female inmates when no one else would. IWF is honored to now stand alongside her in this fight for dignity and justice for incarcerated women. As her story makes clear, there is nothing safe, compassionate, or humane about forcing women to live alongside violent, predatory men.”

IWF’s Storytelling Manager and co-producer of the series, Andrea Mew, added, “Women behind bars trust Amie with their lives – and that’s because she’s genuinely one of very few invested in this fight day in and day out to protect their rights. It takes a lot of courage to stand up for biological truth rather than simply take the path of least resistance. Female inmates bearing the burden of ‘inclusive’ policies deserve a better chance at rehabilitation – and Amie’s tireless advocacy truly demonstrates the urgency of this situation in California and beyond.”

Amie Ichikawa and Kelsey Bolar recently joined The Megyn Kelly Show to discuss the Cruel & Unusual Punishment series and the dangers of integrating men into women’s prisons. As an IWF ambassador and former inmate, Ichikawa will continue to fight for the rights of incarcerated women. 

Watch Amie Ichikawa’s story HERE.

Read Amie Ichikawa’s New York Post exclusive op-ed featuring Cruel & Unusual Punishment: The Male Takeover of Female Prisons, HERE.


As more states allow men who identify as women into women’s prisons, few are aware of the harmful fallout. Women with histories of trauma and domestic abuse are forced to share their most private and intimate spaces with intact males—many of whom are violent, sexual predators serving time for heinous crimes.

Allowing male offenders to reside in women’s prisons is dangerous and unfair. Put simply, it’s cruel and unusual punishment. These stories stand as a testament to why biological sex matters, especially in institutional settings. Incarcerated women need and deserve female-only spaces. Anything less is a violation of their most basic human rights.

The eradication of single-sex prisons is harming female inmates.

In this documentary mini series, IWF brings voices to light who detail the untold, gruesome story about what’s been happening to female inmates behind closed doors. As more and more prison systems allow males to declare themselves “women” and opt to be housed in facilities meant for females, the voices of those most affected deserve to be heard. 

Watch the Cruel & Unusual Punishment: The Male Takeover of Female Prisons trailer HERE. Each episode of this ongoing short documentary series produced by IWF, varying from 5 to 10 minutes in length, will be released individually over the coming weeks, with episodes available to the public for free on YouTube.

Direct media inquiries and booking requests to [email protected]

Independent Women’s Forum is dedicated to developing and advancing policies that aren’t just well intended, but actually enhance people’s freedom, choices, and opportunities.

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Unlock members-only content, resources and events by activating your Free Pass or gain access to additional features by selecting a monthly membership package. Join Now Already a member? Login